Year A: 19th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Gospel: Matthew 14: 22-33
After feeding the five thousand, Jesus now makes time for prayer. This was as essential to Him as breathing and the time apart - even from his closest disciples and friends - gave Him the precious time He needed in communion with the Father
Things were not so tranquil for the disciples. They had set out on the boat and found themselves battling against strong winds and heavy rain.
How Jesus walked on the waters, we cannot know - but Peter's reaction is wonderfully human - “Let me do that!”
As a professional fisherman, Peter would have been strong and used to the ways of the water - but, for the moment, his faith is strong enough to make him believe that even he too could walk on water.
And, for a time, his faith does sustain him - until the reality of what he is doing hits him - and then panic sets in!
Jesus - secure in Himself and filled with the Spirit -remains calm enough for the two of them - and brings Peter to the safety of the boat.
There are times for all of us when our faith seems strong and we feel we can do anything - but the fact remains that, when the storms hit and the doubts set in, we can feel that we are sinking beneath the waves. Our faith is tested to its limits - and we can feel overwhelmed. It takes huge trust to continue - reaching out into the darkness and storm hoping that Jesus will be there to hold us safe.
We can take consolation from the story of Peter. He thought he could do great things like the Master - but then realised that it was much more dangerous than he had thought.
This tendency was to stay with him throughout his discipleship - and yet, even knowing that, Jesus chose him to lead the apostles out into the streets at Pentecost. There, he would encounter storms of a different kind -but now he was filled with the Holy Spirit - and trusted that he could walk on water because now Jesus was with him always.
What does it mean for me?
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